Boxted: Nonconformity

Page 67

A History of the County of Essex: Volume 10, Lexden Hundred (Part) Including Dedham, Earls Colne and Wivenhoe. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 2001.

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Four women recusants were reported between 1592 and 1617 (fn. 1) and at least one of two men who refused to take the oaths of Supremacy and Allegiance in 1692 was a Catholic in 1717. (fn. 2)

A Quaker was fined in 1659 for refusing to pay tithes and most of the 16 nonconformists in the parish in 1676 were probably Quakers. (fn. 3) In 1675 they attended the Dedham Meeting. In 1688 Boxted and Horkesley Quakers started a Meeting which continued until 1747, probably at John Clarke's house which was licensed in 1705. The Meeting was very thinly attended by 1749, and it closed in 1751. (fn. 4)

A nonconformist preacher Richard Rand (d. 1692), ejected from Marks Tey in 1662, was licenced to preach at Boxted in 1672, perhaps at Robert Maidstone's Pondhouse which was licenced for meetings in the same year. (fn. 5)

The Anabaptists recorded in 1770 attended Langham chapel. (fn. 6) In 1792 five Baptists and their minister met at Thomas Grove's house. (fn. 7) The summer meeting of 'dissenters' at a Boxted barn on Sunday evenings in 1829, at which a minister claimed to preach to about 400, was apparently an offshoot of the Langham Baptist chapel. (fn. 8)

A Wesleyan Methodist chapel was recorded in 1830. On census Sunday 1851 the chapel, which accommodated 200, reported attendances of 115 in the morning and 148 in the afternoon. (fn. 9) In 1972 it was served by the minister of Mile End Methodist Church. (fn. 10) It was still open in 1998 when there were 22 members. (fn. 11) The surviving brick chapel was erected in 1832 and has a later 19th-century porch. (fn. 12)


  • 1. Cal. Assize Rec. Essex, Eliz. I, p. 384; Cal. Assize Rec. Essex, Jas. I, pp. 129, 195; E.R.O., Q/SR 171/61D.; Hist. MSS. Com. 13, 10th Rep. IV, p. 489.
  • 2. E.R.O., Q/SR 473/48, 48A; ibid. Q/RRp 1/36; E.A.T. n.s. xxii. 111.
  • 3. E.R. xlv. 90; Compton Census, ed. Whiteman, 51.
  • 4. S. H. G. Fitch, Colch. Quakers, 20-1; E.R.O., Q/SBb 33/2; below, Dedham, Nonconf.
  • 5. Smith, Eccl. Hist. Essex, 389; G. L. Turner, Orig. Records of Early Nonconf. ii. 937; Calamy Revised, ed. A. G. Matthews, pp. 402-3.
  • 6. Lamb. Pal. Libr., Terrick 15.
  • 7. Guildhall MS. 9580/1, p. 33.
  • 8. E.R.O., Q/CR 3/1/42, 3/2/65.
  • 9. P.R.O., HO 129/8/205.
  • 10. V.C.H. Essex, ix. 409.
  • 11. Inf. from Miss J. V. Dansie.
  • 12. Date stone on chapel.